FBI raids property; owner has sued local, federal government

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FBI raids property; owner has sued local, federal government

The Spring Valley man whose home was raided by law enforcement for the second time in two years is a former Wright-Patterson Air Force Base employee who twice sued the federal government and has a pending appeal against Greene County for malicious prosecution, according to court documents.

The 2302 Schnebly Road home of Joel Montgomery, 48, was raided Thursday morning by FBI, ATF and other law enforcement agencies acting on a federal search warrant, according to FBI spokesman Todd Lindgren. Montgomery was arrested and is in Montgomery County Jail awaiting a court hearing.

Lindgren didn’t confirm or deny if the raid was in connection to a 2015 raid of the property by Greene County Sheriff’s deputies. Lindgren said all court documents related to Thursday’s raid were under seal in federal court.

The 2015 raid netted 175 weapons but Greene County prosecutors dismissed the second-degree misdemeanor case against Montgomery onSept. 30, 2015, according to common pleas and municipal court records obtained by this news organization.

In September 2016, Montgomery sued Greene County’s sheriff, county commissioners and the prosecutor’s office, alleging malicious prosecution tied to the 2015 raid. Montgomery’s attorney in that case didn’t return a message seeking comment. A message left seeking comment was not immediately returned by the Greene County Prosecutor’s Office.

Xenia Municipal Court records indicate a neighbor said he thought Montgomery fired shots that went above a makeshift shooting backstop on his property and struck the neighbor’s detached garage, bike trailer and pickup in June 2015.

“How’s this gonna end boys?” one deputy said Montgomery remarked when they investigated the claim, according to a statement of facts filed in court.

One deputy “observed what he described to be approx. one thousand spent casings of what appeared to him to be .223 caliber ammunition at the front door of suspect Montgomery’s residence,” according to the statement of facts.

The deputies also heard what sounded like automatic gunfire after they left Montgomery’s home but didn’t leave the area that same day, according to the statement of facts.

Montgomery’s lawsuit against Greene County noted a June 24, 2015 search warrant, but Xenia Municipal Court officials had no access Friday to such a document, so any search warrant could be under seal.

Montgomery alleged in the Greene County lawsuit that his ex-wife received calls from the sheriff’s office that their children were in danger and that deputies were looking for derogatory information to provide to Children Services.

The lawsuit said Greene County law enforcement seized all computer equipment, all weapons, all antique guns, parts, cash, gold and other valuables. The suit asked for more than $325,000 in damages.

Montgomery’s lawsuit ultimately was dismissed by visiting Judge James Brogan. In July 2017, Montgomery appealed the decision to the Second District Court of Appeals, where it is ongoing.

Montgomery sued the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the United States Air Force, the Air Force’s office of special investigation and some individuals alleging unlawful electronic surveillance of him, according to a complaint filed in 2013 in Dayton’s U.S. District Court.

In that lawsuit, Montgomery said he found a GPS device underneath his vehicle, a camera in the WPAFB office in which he worked and a bug in his home, all from 2006 to 2007. At the time, Montgomery said he had certain security clearance and worked for the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) and at the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), according to the complaint.

Montgomery’s suit said that from 2002 to 2004 he was a program manager in charge of the Electro-Optical Materials Intelligence Group of GDAIS, a Dept. of Defense contractor.

The complaint said that because of derogatory information, Montgomery was placed on leave without pay and later terminated. Messages seeking comment from GDAIS and Montgomery’s federal lawsuit attorney were not immediately returned.

Both federal suits ended with a stipulation of dismissal filed in August 2014.

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